Siemens CEO departure unlikely to affect US comms

NEW YORK: The abrupt decision of Siemens CEO Klaus Kleinfeld to leave the company in September is not expected to significantly affect the firm's US operations or its communications executives, according to Siemens SVP of corporate affairs and marketing Jack Bergen.

Kleinfeld announced on Thursday that, in the midst of a large corruption investigation into the company's business practices and the apparent loss of confidence from some board members, he will not seek a contract renewal.

Bergen said that Kleinfeld's departure will not endanger his job, because he reports to Siemens' US CEO George Nolen. But he said he was unsure of the future of his counterpart in Germany, where the company is based.

"What's happening there is very much oriented around pressures from the labor unions in Germany, who I think see the CEO as moving too quick to restructure the company," Bergen said. "But here in the United States, not at all."

He added that Siemens' current scandal, which involves allegations of on hundreds of millions of dollars in illegal bribes the company is suspected of paying to secure international business, is not centered in the US.

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